Lemurs, Tigers & Squirrels—Oh My!!! Houston, We Ain’t Got No Problem

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H-town was rockin’ once again with the best competitors ever at Lucky’s Pub for the 2018 Houston U.S. Air Guitar Championship! It didn’t hurt that Virus Vodka and Jim Beam sponsored the drink specials. With free drinks provided to organizers, sponsors and competitors, we were all feeling mighty fine from the start.

Our diverse array judges for the evening included a cosplay queen, an orthopedic surgeon, a comic book aficionado, the lead singer for local metal band Masqued, and the one and only Tiger Claw. Our MC of Airemonies was El Airiachi who kicked off the show shredding to Zak Wylde’s Star Spangled Banner.

Our first competitor and only walk-on Brobama Brownstein barely to the stage after he spending 8 hours drinking before showtime. He made his glorious debut—and departure—all in less than 5 minutes. He was MIA the rest of the evening.

From then on, the show became focused on sexiness and style. Sweet Sexy Jay (Jay Wall) impressed us with looks and charm as ZZ Top’s sharp dressed man. Keeping it flowing, Aleistair Crowley (Mark Good) was in beast mode spitting blood as he jammed his ass off to Overkill’s Hello from the Gutter.

Praise the Lloyd!! Next up was Stonehenge (Lloyd Weema) who graced us with his presence after traveling the country to compete in 4 other U.S. Air Guitar competitions. He ain’t from Texas, but Texas wants him anyway!

Next, A Bad-ass Lemur (Leo Bernardo) came down from the treetops and rocked us like a hurricane, proving lemurs are to be feared—at least at first. Apparently they can be easily tamed as well. An enthusiastic women quickly domesticated him by stroking and playing with his tail.

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Soon after, another animal swung down from the tree looking for a nut. Enter 3-time Houston Air Guitar competitor Squirrel Sensation (LisaMarie Raspberry) who burned up the stage with Dio’s Rainbow in the dark. Despite losing some fur thanks to a wardrobe malfunction, nothing could stop her showing us that squirrels are seriously underrated and fierce air guitarists.

In full metal & spike garb, air guitar virgin Tipsy Gypsy (Chelsy Parks) came out dripping blood & killed it to Gwar as she hopped on a table baring her lacy thong to the audience.

Austin’s air guitar organizer His Airness (Matt Dailey) traveled to Houston to show off his skills from the Capitol City. His routine scored well enough to slide into the 2nd round—with a show to come that no one expected.

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Lastly, another three-timer Gimp Daddy (Patrick Friend) proved you don’t need the use of your legs to rock! He used his super powers to climb on stage and shredded to AC/DC’s Touch Too Much on his knees. The song was appropriate as women flocked to him later touching him…ohhhh too much!! He straight-up wowed the judges and jumped to first place.

While our Organizer ExtraordinAIRe tallied the scores, retired competitor Tiger Claw, who multi-tasks as a judge, sponsor and U.S. Air Guitar Hall of Famer, slashed to Iron Maiden’s Two Minutes to Midnight proving you can take the man outta Air Guitar, but there’s taking air guitar outta the man!! His technical skills made seasoned guitarists shiver in their spots.

Next, El Airiachi paid homage to drummer, Vinnie Paul who just passed away. As if Virus Vodka drinks hadn’t already infected us, the Mexican Mariachi melted faces with Pantera’s version of Cat Scratch Fever.

Heading into the second round was His Airness, Aleistair Crowley, Squirrel Sensation, Stonehenge and Gimp Daddy. They all knew they had to step up their game as the mandatory track was Living Color’s Cult of Personality.

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His Airness brought a certain kind of class to the night by baring almost all in a black tuxedo speedo. Judges were still a bit distracted by his junk when Aleistair Crowley came bleeding onto the stage with a dramatic act that nailed stage presence. Squirrel Sensation proved she was back to get a nut and received two perfect 6.0’s from a couple judges just before they were blinded by the lights of Stonehenge’s twinkling shoes and cape. Gimp Daddy impressed the hell out of the judges again proving that it’s the hands & the mind that MAKE the shredder—not the legs.

After a quick and very close tally, Stonehenge took home the Houston trophy, $100 cash, and an framed, autographed USAG Houston Qualifier poster with congrats signed by George Lynch.

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Rounding out the rest of the top five was Gimp Daddy in 2nd, Squirrel Sensation in 3rd, Aleistair Crowley in 4th, and His Airness in 5th.

Our biggest winner was the $250 donation to our non-profit, Jake’s Heart LLC, run by 8 yr old Jake Garrett-McCann. His organization helps to feed, cloth & give necessities to the homeless, as he works to end homelessness and help those less fortunate. Jake’s mission, executed with compassion, warmth and huge smile give me great hope for our world.

Extra special thanks to sponsors Tiger Claw, Emerald Dragon Books, Adam’s Attic, Sly Jon Vintage Rock n Roll, Lucky’s Pub, Virus Vodka, and Jim Beam. Their financial and in-kind donations helped us on show we’ll never forget!

Cameron Hawk